Ever mindful: Buddhist monastics practice simple life of meditation in Mississippi

Kristina Goetz: Before dawn, a Buddhist monk stands beneath a tall pine in a long brown robe the color of Mother Earth. He rings a bronze bell suspended from a low-hanging limb to signal it’s time for walking meditation.

By the light of a crescent moon, monks and nuns in the same brown robes walk slowly, silently. The crunch of gravel and the tap of footsteps on blacktop are the only sounds in the cool air. They focus on two things: breathing and walking. They may silently repeat a simple phrase.

Breathing in, I know that I am breathing in. Breathing out, I

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